In March 2013 I decided I wanted to live in a way that I haven't before. I had a great life and was happy, but as human intent would have it, I wanted more. (We want more, we want more!) I set out on a journey. A journey to better my outlook, myself, and achieve the absolute best life possible.
"Trying to find the balance between impulsive personality traits and a strong yearn for the perfect peace is something that is frequently on my brain. The goal is internal contentment, more consistently." -Pure Lyndsanity (March 2013)
I feel as if many instances have led me to this point. Numerous occasions, all too strange to be coincidence, signs, and intuition, have brought me to try this idea of spiritual living, which was never my intent to begin with. Now, to me, spirituality doesn't mean monthly retreats in India, playing bongo drums in a hut, and torching my house with sage a la Olympic Torch style every week. Living spiritually is for someone who has a desire to seek purpose, who believes in more to life, and who wants to connect to themselves and everyday life. Whether you believe in God, Santa Claus, or Dr. Phil, spiritual living can be for anyone, for everyone has a spirit. I delve in a little more than just drinking green tea and posting pictures of yoga mats (#namaste!) on Instagram. This is what I've discovered the past 6 months:
The Body: Fitness obviously plays a crucial role in overall quality of life, from energy level to deeper sleep to a sharper mind. March is when I made fitness and eating better a serious venture. Goals were made and met, and I'm in better shape now than I was when I was 15 and dancing 35 hours a week, not to mention feeling amazing. Fitness is something that I can call a big part of my life, and it most definitely improves every day perspectives.
The Mind: Conquering the human brain is something I'll never master, but I wanted to be able to quiet my mind more and think with more clarity. This quest had a simple solution when I got diagnosed for "severe" ADHD in July. I knew I had it, but I always had decent grades and it wasn't affecting me immensely up until recently. I've always felt like I had 100 TVs on in my head, and someone told me to just watch one. I didn't know how much taking control of that situation could make things so much more... simplified (should’ve figured!) That pretty much solved my main mind goals I had, but the pursuit has been to better life in all aspects, so the mission continues...
1. Hello, You. Meet, You
We look at the mirror countless times a day, mirror pic selfies flurish on our time lines, and we make sure our personal appearance is on point. But why is it we get mad when someone doesn't tell us we have spinach in our teeth, but we get mad when someone tells us, "You're mad."
Only concerned with physical mirrors, spiritual "life" mirrors are strongly overlooked. Life, including memories, is a mirror, constantly reflecting back to us what we show it. If your everyday life is not satisfactory, then you have to look inward to find out why. Harmony is achieved not by what is happening around you, but what's happening inside. It's about who you are internally that you must know, down to each joyous and tragic emotion that we've so comfortably concealed within the depths of our being. It's knowing yourself as person so sincerely and it is only then that we will have the power to fulfill.
How? Start by listening to yourself, what you say subconsciously in your head, the inner chatter, that is a great start. What vibe do you organically send out? We think the negative things we can't say out loud. The problem is that we think them at all.
Negative thoughts are the root to a negative life. We know that saying something bad about someone won't bring us any higher, but we also must realize the actual direct impact that negative thought has on us and our immediate physical reality. You get back what you put out.
2.The World Does Not Owe You Anything
We've all been there before. Feeling like a dog about to jump over the fence, only to find yourself chained to the tree again, yanking you back down time after time. Disappointments arise and oftentimes we feel as if we've exhausted all options to make situations better, concluding with feeling victimized. Cruel, cruel, world...
I often joke that my life is the Truman Show, and everyone in Heaven is laughing at my expense.
“This cannot be normal.” I say after I lose my keys, shatter my phone, get shot at by a bb gun, set my hair on fire, have my eyes pecked at by a flock of seagulls, and then proceed to get run over by a bus. (Situation harshly exaggerated.)
Inevitable circumstances will happen and hardships are all a part of the deal. The ego makes us think we deserve all things great, but by genuinely realizing that life is not fair, and doesn't owe anyone a damn thing, it makes it easier to process upsets. A hurricane doesn't care how long it took to build your beach house.
It's easy to become a victim in unfortunate situations. "The universe is just out to get me. I didn't do anything to deserve this." This is a way to describe the world and explain what's happened to yourself. You’ll see the world as “it sucks” but still secretly you hope you'll be rewarded for having this contemptuous view of life. The ego plays games to see if it can get what it wants and still think this way. Disappointments are sure to follow...
With shortcomings more often than desired, with no signs of slowing down, it is you that needs to stop.
“When nothing goes right, go left." I realized whatever I've been doing to assist with this struggles clearly doesn't work. Plan B time.
Each tragedy regardless its extent, teaches us something. Lessons we need in order to be our best selves. I believe everything does happen for a reason, and I think many things are going to occur whether we step on a crack or walk under a latter anyway. Every heartbreaking disaster, pleasant person, and typical day has something to teach us, it is up to us to interpret it and take that knowledge. The biggest objective in life is to keep learning and never stop.
3. Leggo Your Ego
The ego gives the impression that its way is perfection.
So many of us are stuck in our ways, thinking, "This is just how I am. Like it or don't."
While that idea holds truth in that we shouldn't care about spiteful opinion from others, a veil muffles that statement. That mindset still accommodates a sliver of defense. Defensive in the way that maybe we subconsciously think we are above changing our minds, too content to change our ideals, and the way we live is good enough perhaps. We want what we want, and don't realize the importance in what we need. What we need contains the power to change our lives.
For example: Just because someone is not looking to fall in love the moment, doesn’t mean they should be so guarded that they fail to appreciate the good in someone. You could be missing out on a new friend, connection, or ultimately learn something. Shed the ego.
4. You, Yourself, and You
By starting to change your way of thinking, you will notice that how you act will become a little more... tranquil.
Reaction is one thing I have noticed. Instead of harsh and instant reactions, I find myself processing the situation from different angles and dealing accordingly. The way people behave is something we have no control over. We need to focus on how we react to others, rather than playing the blame game, arguing our brash reactions were due to the nature of their behavior. People can do what they want, and they will. (They ain’t worthy of your energy girl!)
Reactions are interesting and can tell a lot about people as well. If someone reacts strongly in opposition of something, it may be likely because there’s something inside (wound or insecurity possibly) that they don’t want to rise to the surface.
For example: If you had green pants on and someone comes up and says "Ew! Gross! Your pants are so red!" It wouldn't mean anything. But if you had some insecurity about your pants (maybe they were secretly red under the green), then you would be affected and a negative reaction would be result of that (humorous) insecurity.
This goes back to knowing thyself.
At the end of the day, it is you and you alone. No one else can be responsible for your successes, as no one else can be responsible for your failures. Most importantly, no one else has the authority to grant you happiness but yourself.
5. Do It For a Cause, Not the Applause
As a social norm, we often run to our phones to post that grand, heartless, gesture we just did, to be bombarded by likes and approval.
Continuously do things to help people, even behind the scenes of our social media outlets, from wholehearted goodness. Do it because helping others is necessary, and you’ll feel good about yourself. Cycle of good vibes all around! Keep helping others and healin’ that soul!
6. Nothing is static
One of the most important things to remember is life is constantly evolving.
Continuous action is necessary. When we feel at a standstill in life, why do most of us lie in bed and wait for something? Sitting there waiting for a sign. Waiting for an alien invasion to come down, grab us, bring us in their ship as they fly us away to where we need to be and gives us a map that tells us what to do. It’s not gonna happen. It is our responsibility to think in a way that will benefit and to do the necessary steps to make things happen. The universe and us together will work in conjunction. Your “perfect moment’ to do something might not be the actual perfect moment. There is no moment of absolute certainty, so get moving.
“Hey dad, you wanna hear something funny? There was a man who was drowning, and a boat came, and the man on the boat said “Do you need help?” and the man said “God will save me”. Then another boat came and he tried to help him, but he said “God will save me”, then he drowned and went to Heaven. Then the man told God, “God, why didn’t you save me?” and God said “I sent you two boats, you dummy!”
— Christopher, The Pursuit Of Happyness
The only requirement on earth is to BE. The rest is up to you.
You are a purposeful physical being, with the power internally to accomplish beyond measure. What we choose to do with our wisdom and knowledge we've learned on the way is entirely up to us. It is what works for each person individually. I certainly realize many people, especially younger generations, say they’re “spiritual.” As it’s some kind of trend (because it is) and might just pop in a few bikram yoga classes and they’re the new Buddha in town. It certainly is a lot more practices than that, too many to include here, but whatever, gotta let them do their thing. It's about letting people that are completely ridiculous to never shake or break you.
It’s almost so simple it's stupid...ly beautiful. Positive! I’m learning so I can trust my instincts, be completely in tune with myself, and create the reality I want for me. It’s a different way of thinking that most are not used to. Of course, people will say this "spiritual, holistic, hipster, new wave" ideas are mumbo jumbo, sure. People practice different religious teachings and ideas just as people order different sandwiches at Subway. It’s about trial and error, experimenting, and learning. In fact, this article was written by someone who A) calls anyone laying in a field of grass a hippie and B) got kicked out and failed Spirituality and Empowerment class in college (yes, that’s a class and I just missed more than the 3 days we were allowed. Damn 9amers.) As you see I wouldn't be the stereotypical candidate. It is a personal experience that I continue to work on in the every day. I'm no where near solitude, and I will continue to embrace chaos, but it is simple changes that has made things better, no lie. The plan is too embark and grow. Shall be interesting to see where it goes from here!
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